Russelioside-B, a natural fat loss steroid
Twelve years ago, when Hoodia gordonii was still hot, hip & promising, we seriously thought that the supplement industry finally had an effective weight loss supplement in the pipeline. Not so. The Egyptian pharmacologist Essam Abdel-Sattar may have found a worthy replacement. In the cactus Caralluma quadrangula he found a relatively simple steroid-like substance, that shows some remarkable effects in animal studies.
Caralluma quadrangula grows everywhere on the Arabian peninsula. From this plant, the researchers retrieved the steroid-like russelioside B. They mixed this substance through the feed of rats.
If the rats had been human adults, they would have used about 200-300 milligrams of russelioside B [25 mg/kg] or 400-600 milligrams [50 mg/kg] every day.
For 16 weeks the animals were given feed with extra calories in the form of fat.
A control group received fat-rich feed without active substances; the animals in a second control group received standard feed - even without active substances.
In both the relatively low and relatively high dose, russelioside-B inhibited the growth of the fatty layers considerably. The high dose worked better than the low one.
Not surprisingly, russelioside B also inhibited the growth of fat cells. [Figure] The pregnane glycoside protected insulin's effectivity, and limited the rise of HOMA-IR [a measure of insulin resistance].
The researchers suspect that russelioside-B works in more than one way. One of them is that the substance inhibits inflammatory factors such as interleukin 1-beta, interleukin-6 and TNF-alpha.
Another possible mechanism is that russelioside B makes cells consume more energy. Russelioside-B inhibited the reduction of UCP-1 and -2 due to a high-energy diet. UCPs make cells convert more nutrients into energy - in a less efficient way.
"Russelioside B controlled weight gain, improved lipid profile, and ameliorated inflammatory derangement accompanying diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance", write the researchers. "Further, russelioside B modulated adipokine expression and increased expression and protein level of energy expenditure enzymes."
"Therefore, the overall antiobesity action of russelioside B may be, at least partly, attributed to its anti-inflammatory and adipokine modulating activities in addition to it is favorable effect on energy expenditure."
"Future studies are warranted to investigate the pharmacological actions of russelioside B on important organs such as the liver and to fully explore its compensatory mechanisms against the metabolic effects of high fat feeding in rats."
Front Pharmacol. 2018 Aug 30;9:990.
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